An Update on My 2013 Goals: Smashing Successes, Dismal Failures. (And That’s Just January!)

An Update on My 2013 Goals: Smashing Successes, Dismal Failures. (And That’s Just January!)

my-goals-for-2013-updateThis year (unlike last) I’m going to post regular updates on my goal progress.

Here are my goals for 2013 and the progress (or lack thereof) I made in January, along with next steps.


Save up half a down payment. We started 2013 going backwards on this goal. Between 4-figure car repairs (turns out we had several years worth of deferred maintenance on our minivan, and doing that all at once is pricey) and a cracked pipe in our old house, we dipped into our savings instead of adding to it. Not a great start to the year, but thank goodness for emergency funds!

Next step: reassess how much we’ll need to put away monthly to meet our goal, since January didn’t go according to plan.

Health and Fitness:

Complete a Whole 30. Done! This was so worthwhile. Read my complicated thoughts on it here. I’m sharing a more objective, less complicated recap (including what happened when I re-introduced coffee and wine) later this week.

Next step: plan another Whole 30 and put it on the calendar. I needed this nutritional “reset,” and I need to do it more than once a year to keep bad habits from creeping up on me. I’m eyeing April as a good month, or July if that seems too soon.

Practice yoga once a week. I’m loving Jennifer Hoffman’s yoga videos. I’ve actually increased to 2x/week because I feel so great when I do it.

Next step: I’m eyeing increasing to 3x/week, because Jen says that’s where the real benefits come in. A

Do one pull-up. I put a pull-up bar by our bathroom, so I think about this goal all the time. I’ve been consistently practicing, and I’m obviously getting stronger. I’m encouraged by how I can definitely tell a difference after just one month.

Next step: practice, practice, practice.

8:30 2k row. I told you I suspected this goal would be tough. I set my baseline on January 2; it was 10:28. On January 31 I hit 9:29.3. The advantage of being untrained is that you make rapid improvement.

Next step: post a training plan by the rower to log my workouts and track my progress.


Write something every day. I’m not sure if I’ve actually hit this every day, I’m not checking the boxes like Jerry Seinfeld or anything. Maybe I should? I have written every day even if I haven’t completed something every day. Two things that have made this easier: my husband built me a writing desk, and my morning routine.

writing desk

Guest post once a month. Last month, I was over on Wellness Mama and Unknown Jim.

Next step: make plans to guest post for March and beyond. (Got any ideas for blogs that would be a great fit? I’m listening.)

Read 3 books about the craft of writing. Nothing yet. That’s okay.

Next step: I’m taking a writing course, and I just picked up the assigned reading: When We Were Birds: Fifty-Four Variations on Voice by Terry Tempest Williams.

Try new things. I introduced the Twitterature link-up (next date: February 15) and brainstormed an email series. (More info on that soon!)

Next step: figure out the topic for my next video blog. What do you want to hear about?

Hit up another conference (or two or three). I bought my ticket for Killer Tribes, happening in March in Atlanta.

At Home

Celebrate Special Breakfasts. This has been a smashing success so far. Simple, easy, much appreciated.

Next step: plan ahead for Valentine’s Day.

Print photographs quarterly. Nothing yet, but I have been taking pictures, and importantly–taking them off my camera!

Next step: figure out how I’m going to organize my pictures. I’m considering using this method from Hollywood Housewife.


Log the books I read–and keep good records for you. I’m maintaining Goodreads, and I finally started a “Books I Read in 2013” board on Pinterest. I made you a pretty sidebar button for them.

Next step: keep it up!

Read 1 fiction book a month. I’m finding that if I get fiction into the house, I read it. It also helps that I decided to read fiction before bed. January favorites were The Giver and The Wednesday Wars; I’m also working my way through the Betsy-Tacy books.

Next step: keep it up!


Say yes to get-togethers with friends. I’m off to a good start on this one.

Seek out opportunities to meet blogging friends in person. I’m scheming on this one.


Use my weekends well. We’re finding our feet on this one; details here.

Learn to use my camera. First step: keep my DSLR camera handy so I actually do use it. My husband also gave me a new lens for Christmas and I’ve had lots of fun playing around with it.

Next step: read the manual in February.

Go on a family camping trip. Nothing yet.

Next step: I’m not thinking about this till spring.

My Big Fuzzy Goal:

Cultivate a warmer atmosphere in my home in 2013. I did great on this one in January, because of my Whole 30. I’m not even kidding. I felt amazing, so it was easy to be patient, kind, and cheerful. I was shocked at how my Whole 30 directly impacted the atmosphere in my home, but there it is.

Next step: Re-read Happier at Home for more ideas. And follow my own advice via Brené Brown.

How are you coming on your 2013 goals? (If you haven’t set any yet, it’s not too late!)

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  1. Johanna says:

    January was a HARD month for us. I did not anticipate that at all so I didn’t make as much headway on my goals as I would have liked. But thankfully a few of them got off to a really good start. Had a little reset for February and it is going better.

  2. Bethany says:

    I’m curious about the writing course you’re taking: would you recommend it. Writing more is a fuzzy goal for me, but some other goals were rather unexpectedly changed in January. I suppose a gift of that is space for reflection and change,if I can accept it (some things are harder to set aside than others!)

  3. January was kind of a crazy month for us. We were busy, we had bills, a lot of them, and now we are into february. We are planning our wedding in May, so a lot of things have been put on hold for the time being so we can save up for the wedding.

    that being said, one of my big goals this year is to write something every day – and not just blog comments. A blog post, a short story, a poem, anything. But every day.

  4. Jeannie says:

    I admire you just for HAVING all those goals, to say nothing of how you are doing with reaching them! After an Advent rejuvenation of my blog I decided to make blogging more intentional — not in a pressured way, but just to post more frequently, have fun with it, not worry about always being terribly profound. So far it’s working; I’m posting oftener and slowly expanding my small community. I get comments sometimes! Who knew! 🙂

  5. Tim says:

    “Next step: make plans to guest post for March and beyond. (Got any ideas for blogs that would be a great fit? I’m listening.)”

    YES! Come on over to my place with a guest post! Please-please-pleasey-please-please!

    Ahem, now that I’ve got that out of my system, I have a question about the reading thing. Is there a particular plan for which non-fiction and fiction you read at any given time, or is it just whatever rises to the top of your to-be-read pile?


  6. Jaimie says:

    If you’re looking for places to guest post, I’d LOVE to have you!!! That would be awesome!!! Let me know. 🙂

    Also, I don’t know where you live, but goodness, if you’re ever in Nebraska (or anywhere in the vicinity) let me know!!

    You’ve inspired me (as you often do)…I’m going to have to write an update post of how I’m doing on my goals (FOCUS…) for this year. 🙂

    • Anne says:

      Hey, I just realized that I don’t say here what I said in my original goals post: Story was one of the 3 I specifically mentioned! And I just love Chicago in September….

  7. Big January! Our January featured a bit more puking than I would have liked. But I kept with my running goal, aided by joining the Y as a family, which has been a massive boost to our lives. Plus 2000 words of fiction a week. I still haven’t nailed down my Big Business Book Idea yet, but I have much of the year on my timeline… I like the idea of making conference-going a goal. It’s such an easy area to underinvest in since it requires travel and arrangements for kids and the like.

    • Anne says:

      Ugh to the puking. February has not historically been a great month for me health-wise. I’m crossing my fingers and taking my vitamins…

      I wish you’d nail down your Big Business Book idea–I’m dying to hear what you’ll cover in the next one!

  8. Stacey says:

    I think you did great! And as another commenter said, I admire the fact that you have and keep track of so many goals! My most concrete goals were reading related and I came very close in January…

    • Anne says:

      Stacey, last year I made great goals but I didn’t do a great job of tracking them. This year I decided to post about my progress more often because then I’d hopefully have progress to report 🙂

  9. Brittany says:

    I’ve really had “setting goals” on my mind since February started. For some reason on January first I completely lacked interest in resolutions. Now I can tell my life is ready for some purpose. This definitely inspired me to get started :).

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